A high credit limit can offer more flexibility and purchasing power.
Several US providers offer high-credit-limit credit cards. With an excellent credit score, you could enjoy a very high limit — as much as $100,000 or more by some reports.
Compare high-credit-limit credit cards
There’s no way to guarantee you’ll get a high credit limit before applying for a card. However, these cards tend to come with higher-than-average limits according to our readers.
How does the credit limit on a credit card work?
When you’re approved for a credit card, your provider will assign you a credit limit. This amount is based on your credit profile — including factors such as your payment history and income — and is not guaranteed. You can use your card to spend up to the limit, decreasing your available credit. If you want to spend more, you must pay off your purchases to increase your available credit.
Premium, high-annual-fee cards tend to have the highest credit limits. These products are designed for consumers with strong earning power and heavy spending, so they typically have stricter minimum income and credit requirements.
What is a high-credit-limit credit card?
This is commonly defined as a card with a credit limit of at least $10,000. You’ll typically need excellent credit to get a limit above this amount.
What are high-credit-limit credit cards used for?
A card with a high limit can be useful if you have large purchases in mind, or if you want to consolidate a lot of debt onto a card with a balance transfer offer. With a high-limit card, you may have the spending flexibility to earn more rewards.
While these cards increase your borrowing power, it’s important to remember you have to repay everything you’ve charged. You’ll accumulate interest if you don’t pay off your balances within your grace periods. If you struggle to repay your balance in full each month or have a tendency to overspend, a high-limit card may not be ideal.
What are the types of high-limit credit cards?
There are plenty of high-limit cards from a range of providers. Depending on the card you choose, you could also enjoy introductory offers such as 0% APR on purchases or balance transfers, signup bonuses or no annual fees in the first year.
Many cards don’t fall exclusively into one category. For example, you might have a charge card that also offers rewards.
American Express is the only major US provider that offers charge cards. These products have no preset spending limits — in other words, no designated credit limits.
While this doesn’t mean you can spend as much as you want, it does mean your spending limit can change from month to month based on factors like your income, spending patterns and payment history. With approval from Amex, you may also be able to make purchases above your typical spending limit.
The biggest difference of a charge card versus a credit card is you must pay off your balance in full after each billing statement. This could feel restrictive if you’re used to carrying a balance. But in return, you could enjoy greater spending flexibility.
Balance transfer credit cards
A balance transfer credit card can help you pay off existing debt faster with a promotional low or 0% APR. You can usually transfer between 75% and 100% of your approved credit limit, so make sure the limit is high enough to support your debt.
If you have a large balance, compare high-limit balance transfer credit cards with maximum limits of around $25,000 or higher.
Case study: Mary switches to a high-limit credit card
Mary currently has a credit card that earns her 1 point per dollar spent on every purchase. But she recently discovered she’s exceeding her available credit limit just for normal monthly expenses. On top of giving her declined transactions, this means she’s not earning the rewards she could if she paid for more of her everyday expenses.
While Mary could request a credit limit increase on her existing card, she decides to compare other cards to see if there is one that gives her more spending power. After weighing her options, she applies for a premium travel card that offers a high limit and accelerated points in various categories. This allows her to pay for her everyday purchases and earn more rewards than before.
Business credit cards
Business cards generally offer higher credit limits than personal cards, so as to provide enough borrowing power for a business. They cater to the fluctuating spending needs of business owners, including those who distribute credit cards to employees.
Rewards credit cards
Rewards cards often have high maximum credit limits, as they’re geared toward consumers with good or excellent credit. If you have stellar credit, you could enjoy your rewards card in multiple ways. For example, you could earn lucrative cash back, points or miles while leveraging your substantial credit line.
How to compare high-credit-limit cards
Here are a few of the top considerations to keep in mind while you hunt for a high-limit card.
Your spending habits
Before you request a credit limit increase or apply for a high-limit card, think about an ideal credit limit that supports your regular spending without tempting you to overspend.
If you regularly repay your balance in full, a high-limit card could help you manage your expenses and give you breathing room in case of emergencies. But if you regularly exceed your budget or don’t always repay your balance in full, a high credit limit could lead you into heavy debt.
Increasing your credit limit
If you want a higher credit limit, you might not need to apply for a new card. If you’re happy with the features and fees of your credit card but simply want more spending freedom, you could request a credit limit increase with your existing bank. As long as your account is in good standing, you regularly pay your balance on time and you have an income to support the increase, you have a chance of approval.
Banks will take a close look at your spending history before approving you for a high-limit card or credit limit increase. If you consistently exceed your credit limit, your bank may decline your credit request. It can see you’re having trouble managing your current balance, which can cast doubt on your ability to handle more credit. The same is true if your account shows multiple missed or late payments.
If you’ll carry a high balance month to month, you may want a card with a low interest rate. The card might offer one low APR. Another card might offer a range of APRs, when you’re more likely to qualify for the best rates with excellent credit.
With an understanding of bonus-reward categories and savvy use of the interest grace period, you can accumulate healthy cash back, points or miles with your high-limit card. You can use your card for all of your purchases each month, then pay for them within the 21 to 25 days before they start accumulating interest.
Pick a card that rewards you for your typical spending. If you’re a globetrotter, for example, you might like a travel card. If you spend in many different categories, you might like a flat-rate cashback card.
Pros and cons of high-limit credit cards
- More spending power. Applying for a higher credit limit will increase your ability to spend. This could be a natural solution if you’re struggling to cover your expenses with your current credit limit.
- Consolidate card debt. If you have debt on one or several credit cards, moving them onto a high-limit card — especially one with a 0% intro APR — could make it easier to manage repayments.
- More potential rewards. A higher limit may let you pay for more of your everyday expenses on plastic, potentially netting you more rewards.
- Useful for business expenses. Business cards often have limits that exceed those of personal cards.
- Dependent on income. Your credit limit increase or credit card application will depend on your credit history and income. If you don’t meet the minimum requirements, you might not be approved.
- Temptation to spend. A higher credit limit could tempt you to spend more than you can afford to repay each month. Remember that you’ll have to repay everything you spend, possibly with interest.
- Interest charges. By carrying a high balance on your card, you could find your debt snowballing fast — even if your card has a reasonable interest rate.
- Annual fees. Premium credit cards with high credit limits tend to have significant annual fees. Weigh these costs against included benefits to decide if a card is worth paying for.
High-limit cards can give you more spending freedom, but they may also tempt you to accumulate debt. Consider your personal circumstances and compare a range of cards so you can choose a product that works for you.